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Faceless

A Whitley and Keal Mystery, Book 2
Narrated by: Amy Deuchler
Series: Whitley & Keal Mysteries, Book 2
Length: 8 hrs and 55 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (35 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Fallsburg, New York, has a killer on the loose - one who's leaving their sadistic, telltale marks on innocent victims.

A pretty teenage girl is found dead in the woods, her face horribly mutilated. A few days later, a second girl, also strikingly beautiful, is attacked in a similar fashion. Who would do such a brutal thing - and why? Is there some sort of psychopathic monster lurking out there, preying upon vulnerable females? Or are the victims being targeted by someone they know?

It's up to two of Fallsburg's finest - Detective Jean Whitley and her new partner, Marty Keal - to find out who's responsible for the grisly crimes. When she starts digging up clues, Jean is startled to learn that the crime has hit uncomfortably close to home. The victims - and many of the potential suspects - are classmates of Jean's 14-year-old daughter, Bethany. To make matters worse, Bethany's behavior has drastically changed. Jean's sweet, loving child has become a sullen, secretive stranger. How much does Bethany really know about the victims - and the crimes that are taking place? Does Bethany's hunky new heartthrob have anything to do with the crimes? And why does the mounting evidence keep pointing to a popular parish priest?

Suddenly deprived of her longtime police detective mentor and friend, Jean is forced to take the lead in this latest investigation, while breaking in a new partner. As they dig deeper into the case, Jean encounters threats to her career, her family relationships...and quite possibly her own daughter's life. Through it all, Jean and Marty must unravel a multi-layered mystery and put a face on the unseen villain, before anyone else ends up dead...and faceless.

©2016 Dawn Kopman Whidden (P)2017 Dawn Kopman Whidden

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  • Lia
  • Sutton, Australia
  • 02-03-18

Great Thriller

I recently finished Dawn Whidden’s Faceless. I really like her main character, Detective Jean Whitley. This story progresses at a good pace, moving back and forth between the home front drama of dealing with a teenage daughter turned surly and the race to find a killer who literally defaces his victims. The tenuous balance Jean has previously maintained between home and work is unraveling and distracting her from the investigation. This is so realistically portrayed that I felt I was inside her living room as she tried to talk to her daughter as well as inside her car with her as she raced to the next crime scene. Kudos to Ms. Whidden for an excellent page-turner.
I was provided this book free of charge for an honest and unbiased review

Amy Deuchler was amazing with the delivery of the story

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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I was completely addicted to the story

“Faceless” by Dawn Kopman Whidden is the second book in the Whitley & Keal series. I definitely recommend that you read or listen to the first book (“A Child is Torn”) before moving onto “Faceless.” We meet back up with all the characters of book 1 and delve deeper into their lives while a killer is on the loose. The killer seems to be attacking gorgeous girls that are only a few years older than Jean Whitley’s daughter Bethany. They seem to have some activities and friends in common, even with the age difference.

“Faceless” really played on my fears as a mother of a young daughter. She’s 8 years old now and I can see myself in Jean. I can see my daughter in Bethany. While this book still portrayed all the relationships and how they have changed and evolved, this book really focuses on the mother/daughter relationship. I was so pleased with the author! She really portrayed the feelings of a struggling mother; along with the raging hormones of a young girl who is trying to find her footing and who she is as she becomes older.

Not only do we have a killer on the loose but we have some major relationship conflicts happening in “Faceless.” Marty and Hope seriously made me laugh out loud through this book. I love how highly they think of each other. They think the other is so wonderful that they are too good for them! It cracks me up since they are both major catches! The amount of communication problems they have is hysterical as well as ironic with hope being a psychologist. The captain is also a perfect comic relief from such a heavy book!

Whidden brings up a huge societal problem in our schools, and honestly everywhere, bullying. We have a scene unfolding of one girl murdered and a second attacked and left for dead. Both girls are referred to as bullies and “mean girls” or as the book calls them “bitches.” Still, do they deserve to die? Who could be behind these nasty murders that are making these model-gorgeous mean girls, faceless? “Faceless” seemed to be much more of a thriller type book than the first one. It also seemed more suspenseful. I was completely addicted to the story and finished it much quicker than the first book.

The narrator of “Faceless” Amy Deuchler was fantastic! Deuchler was able to portray three different POVs flawlessly. She did a great job inflicting emotions, especially with the females. You could feel the devastation when she portrayed Jean’s character. The sounding was clean with no background noise. I appreciate that! Deuchler is definitely a narrator I would happily listen to again.

Audiobook was provided for review by the narrator.

Please find this complete review and many others at my review blog.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Kept Me Guessing!

When pretty girls are murdered and their faces burned off, Detective Jean Whitley has a personal stake in finding the killer. The girls were classmates of her daughter's and she's tutoring the primary suspect. Suddenly very secretive, is Bethany just helping a friend or putting herself in danger?

This was a great mystery and I loved the rapport between Jean and her new partner, Marty Keal. The side stories provided additional layers to the characters and showed the human side of the two detectives. With clues constantly pointing to different people, I was kept guessing until the end. The thrilling climax was certainly one that I didn't see coming and I love when a mystery does that. Well done! The narration was excellent and added to my enjoyment. I really enjoyed this and would recommend it.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review. This review is my honest opinion.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Keeps You Guessing Until The Very End!

Faceless is a great mystery in that it keeps you guessing until the end. The Author does a great job dropping bread crumbs of hints along the way but you seriously will be guessing until the very end. Within the mystery we meet a cast of characters that are extremely relatable and you quickly become invested in them. The narrator was fabulous and bringing the story and characters to life. I look forward to more from this Author and narrator. This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Great story

I loved this book from the beginning I just knew it would a great mystery aka who done it. Was it the mystery boy friend the priest one of the girls or some stranger?
I love how the author wove the personal lives of the detectives in to the story so that was more than one story line.
The narrator did an awesome job with so many different characters.
Thais was my first book by this author but it won’t be my last.
My thoughts on the author and narrator NAILED IT.
I received this free for an honest review from the author or narrator.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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It had its moments...

This one was not my favorite. This book is a stand alone but, I think, the 2nd in the series. I haven’t listened to the first but had no trouble getting to know the characters or understanding the story. Unfortunately, IMHO, the main character isn’t very likable. In fact, the only characters I enjoyed were the stand in partner, Marty, and his father, Captain. Not only did I not like the main character, but the reader also has to suspend belief, stretch the imagination, etc for a good portion of the story. The narration was okay but, again, not my favorite. I will probably pass on the rest of the series. I received a review copy at my request and voluntarily reviewed.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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a great great story

the book is fantastic! I loved it! loved it! loved it! so very much.. it manage to surprise me with the twist.. definitely will wait to the second book

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review."

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Good Book. Narration a little stiff.

Overall, I liked this book. It is a solid murder mystery story with a good cast of characters who have lives beyond what's happening in the main storyline. This helped me to be able to connect more with them and enjoy the book including subtleties not related to the murder case. I requested this book and agreed to review it when done. The narration was fine, however, it felt a bit stiff and forced at times. I felt that sometimes the narrator was reading to me; not acting.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Faceless

A really good mystery!A teenage girl is found with her face burned off.Who would do such a thing?Will they do it again?A twisted story indeed.Amy Deuchler was a fine narrator..I was given this book by the narrator,author or publisher free for an honest review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Great mystery!

Excellent mystery listen! Engaging story, complex characters, and a twist at the end that I didn’t see coming. Great narrator, she had a tone and voice for each character. I highly recommend this for anyone looking for a good mystery. I received a free review copy of this Audiobook at my request and I have voluntarily left this review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • MEDY L
  • 12-27-17

Book 2

Any additional comments?

Faceless is a well written crime novel over with characters that I spend time with. This is one of those times where the motto 'don't judge a book by its cover' comes in to play because I was not attracted by the cover.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • MeDi
  • 12-27-17

Faceless

Faceless s a well written crime novel over with characters that I spend time with. This is one of those times where the motto 'don't judge a book by its cover' comes in to play because I was not attracted by the cover

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
  • KarenThornton
  • 06-09-19

Gripping story

I enjoyed the story and the narration was much better than book one. The plot is good and doesn't get side tracked like some authors do. It is set in America and read by an American so some pronunciation is different than English but it didn't affect my enjoyment. I am liking the main characters and find them realistic. I would recommend as an easy listening thriller.

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  • Liz Rev
  • 05-17-19

Creepy title page!

This is my 3rd Dawn Kopman Whidden book. I've loved every one so far.

The change of narrator for this one (Book 2) was a plus and I really liked 99% of her narration. But.... her Australian and Irish accents made me roll on the floor with laughter. It is a good thing that the main characters are American is all I can say!!! That aside, I thoroughly enjoyed the book. I listened straight after Book 1 which was deliberate and I think I got a lot more out of both of them that way.

For a police procedural style book there's a LOT of backstory - way more than you'd get in most examples of the genre but for me that's a strength. It is like 2 books in one and I love the characters as I said in my review of book 1. So definitely a thumbs up from me!

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 05-15-19

Faceless

I enjoyed this fast-paced murder mystery - the plot twisted and turned and I was unable to guess who the culprit was.

The characters were real, I related to the detective/ mother’s feelings.

I most definitely will be reading /listening to other novels in this series.



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  • Teresa Harwood
  • 04-23-19

Excellent Second book

An excellent second book in the series, building on the existing characters and introducing Whitley and Keal as partners. A killer is targeting teenage girls and murdering them in horrific ways meanwhile Jean Whitley has her own problems at home as her daughter turns into a typical teenager. The story is gripping, the characters familiar and the ending unexpected.

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  • DubaiReader
  • 07-30-18

Who killed these young girls??

This was the second book in the series featuring Jean Whitley and Marty Keal. In the first book, Jean had a different partner, but he has had to stand down for personal reasons and she is now working with Marty Keal, a younger, up-and-coming (and sexier) detective.

I listened to the audio version and was happy to find that the narrator for this book was Amy Deuchler, who seemed more suited to the role than the narrator for Book 1.

The victims of Whitman's serial killer are beautiful teenage girls, whose faces are burned off. It turns out that they are classmates of Jean's fourteen-year-old daughter Bethany, and as such, the crime takes on a very personal note for Jean. While Bethany becomes more and more withdrawn and petulant, her boyfriend also becomes a suspect, as does the local vicar.

I enjoyed that this narrative brought the crime closer to home than the previous book, but I was hoping that Brad, the young boy who was being treated in the first book, might make an appearance too. However, his nurse, Dr Hope Rubin, does feature and her insights into child behaviour are always fascinating.

Great characterisations and an interesting crime. I'm looking forward to Book 3 in the series.

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  • JS748
  • 03-25-18

another one I couldn't put down

This is the second book in the series (although could be read standalone) and yet again Dawn has managed to really tell an intriguing murder mystery but at the same time there are stories around each of the main characters. it's a really good book and I can't wait to listen to Book 3 x

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  • Norma Miles
  • 03-21-18

I used to love my job.

Jean Whitley is an homicide detective, but she is also a mother. Her life becomes seriously complicated when the body of a murdered girl, one attending the same school as, and well known to, her daughter is found, semi naked and badly burned. Then another follows soon after. It becomes apparent that not only is the group of girls who were with the first victim the night she died witholding possibly valuable information but that her own daughter is lying to her. To make things even worse, her long time partner and mentor, Joe, has disappeared just when she needs him most so she is partnered instead with a newly made detective, Marty. This was his first murder investigation since becoming a detective although not his first experience of horrifying deaths (see the first book in the series, A Child is Torn).

This murder mystery, written in part in the first person, switches between the points of view of the main protagonists and between home life and investigation which, in many ways feels secondary to the book. So perhaps not for the die hard detective fans. Narrator, Amy Deuchter, has a warm and pleasant-to-hear mid range voice, with good delivery and excellent intonation. She also distinguishes between speakers in her presentation although, unfortunately her ability with accents needs careful work: her Irish accent was dreadful, the Aussie one simply bizarre, and even her Brooklyn twang seemed strange to my untutored British ears. However, they appear only briefly. This reader also found the delivery a little slow, but that was easily solved by turning up the replay speed to 1.25.

This was an enjoyable book and my thanks to the rights holder of Faceless, for freely gifting ma a complimentary copy, at my request, via Audiobook Boom. The characters, especially but not only, the main protagonists, were very well developed and convincing as fully fledged read people with hurts and wants and needs and fears of their own, so it was easy to empathize with them as they blundered onwards in their search for the killer. As previously mentioned, perhaps not for those who like a straightforward who-dun-it? type murder mystery, a hard edged crime story or a thorough police procedural. But perfect for anyone who wants to mix the lives of the detectives into the pot, not just those of the victims of the crimes.

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  • Emily
  • 02-23-18

Engaging

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

This was a really brilliant detective thriller. I loved the plot, with beautiful teenaged girls tuning up dead with their faces burnt off, and it kept me guessing until the very end. I suspected three different people and it was none of them. It was really interesting, and I greatly enjoyed it.

My major complaint about this series is actually the main character, Jean Whitley, who I’m really not a fan of. She’s ruled by her emotions and constantly excusing her actions because of this. “Oh, I slapped my daughter, it’s because I was upset because she may have had sex” or “I don’t want to talk to my fellow detective because he abandoned me to help his injured daughter”. She becomes incredibly frustrating during parts of this novel, and to me, feels like a really selfish character.

However, the narrator, Amy Deuchler, was incredible. Despite the difficult character, it was easy to listen to, and I loved her narrative speed.